We all know the trope: girls only want assholes. It’s the lament of the ironic “nice guy” who feels he’s been friendzoned. These men honestly believe they are being rejected as a suitor because they are too nice. Which is dumb. But, now it’s not just women rejecting that line of reasoning, it’s science, too.
Psychologists at the University of Guelph and Nipissing conducted a pair of experiments that uncovered a strong connection between altruism and sexual success by analyzing participants’ sexual histories in conjunction with their altruistic tendencies. The results showed the higher a person ranked in levels of altruism, the more sexual partners they were locking down.
Altruism is another word for reciprocity or the idea of acting selflessly without expecting a reward for doing so and can be shown in a variety of ways. It often manifests as generosity, philanthropy, and compassion.
To establish the link, psychologists had participants rate their level of altruism. People who rated themselves positively also had a higher number of casual sex partners as well as more frequent sex when in a relationship. They were also rated more desirable to potential sex partners.
In the second study, participants demonstrated their level of generosity by agreeing or disagreeing to donate fictional financial winnings to a third party. Consistently, people who donated also reported having more sexual partners than those who did not.
Logically, it makes sense that altruistic people would have more sex because they are caring and kind to others, which is deeply attractive when establishing a sexual connection. They are also more likely to be genuine, which makes partners feel special. Generous, selfless people are going to be perceived as less self-involved and more humble, as well. And lastly, self-sacrificing folks date more often on personality than they do on looks, so they have a lot more options when it comes to sexual partners.
Oddly, there is a bit of a catch-22 here because being altruistic in the hopes of more sex means you aren’t ever truly being altruistic. So, you cant go into this wanting the sex if you hope to really get the sex.